I thought I threw all the pictures away, but found this picture of Matthew on my hard drive:
We were at breakfast at House of Pies, a greasy diner that I love so much. We had a German waitress who had just become a citizen of the US that week. She must have been sixty years old if she was a day, and she was so happy to be a US citizen.
Matthew had just shut the blinds, because he saw I was messing with my camera and he was explaining that you can’t have big, direct sunlight like that. The picture wouldn’t turn out very well if it was flooded with sunlight. So he turned back to me, and I snapped the picture. He doesn’t look happy. And his hair is a mess. And, in my opinion, the picture is too dark.
That was our first breakfast together.
I’ve been thinking about loss a lot lately. My very first boyfriend died last year, and I keep thinking WHAT DOES IT MEAN? What does it matter that I knew him? In his case, he ended up exactly where he should have been. He had a family, a wife, a nice house. That was all he ever wanted. But Matthew? He never married. I didn’t talk to him for the last two years of his life so I have no idea if he was happy, though I’d hazard a guess that he was.
It still seems incomplete though.
Because of Matthew’s untimely passing, I have been thinking a lot about my own mortality. It is so difficult to get your mind around your own absence. To really understand what it means that you won’t be here anymore.
From someone who has been left twice to do all the contemplating, it feels like such a loss. I’m still trying to figure out what the hell to do with this information. I was over him when he died, so it feels weird to try and talk about him and to grieve. Most of my love affairs do not give me this trouble.
The little time we had together feels bathed in sepia now, somehow precious in a way it wasn’t before. Somehow, I think he would like that. He was always a bit of a troublemaker.